A year after the Panama Papers: Where does the EU stand?

Lucinda Pearson
15 March, 2017

Ending money laundering in Europe

25 April 2017, 9.00 – 13.00

Residence Palace, Brussels

A year after the Panama Papers, it’s time to look back and assess what has been done to combat offshore financial secrecy. The Panama Papers have shown the need to bring greater transparency into the global financial system. At the global level, at least 150 inquiries, audits or investigations into Panama Papers revelations have been announced in 79 countries. Governments are investigating more than 6,500 taxpayers and companies, and have recouped at least $110 million so far in unpaid taxes or asset seizures.

But what about the European Union? There have been a number of positive legislative and regulatory moves including the ongoing revision process of European anti-money laundering rules and the setting up of a Parliamentary Inquiry Committee to investigate the European side of the Panama Papers. 

Where does the EU stand a year after the Panama Papers? This is the question we will try to answer during the event that will mark the launch of Transparency International EU report Under the Shell: Ending Money Laundering in Europe on 25 April at the Residence Palace in Brussels.

The conference will focus on a key aspect of the fight against money laundering and tax evasion: increasing transparency around the identity of the ultimate beneficiaries hiding behind complex webs of shell companies and trusts, a concept better known as beneficial ownership transparency. The first session will be dedicated to assessing the state-of-play in selected EU Member States while the roundtable in the second session will touch upon other critical issues including the current revision process of EU anti-money laundering rules, the role of intermediaries and professional enablers and offshore jurisdictions in facilitating financial secrecy.

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8.30 – 9.00 Registration & Breakfast
9.00 – 9.20 Welcoming remarks 

Carl DOLAN, Director, Transparency International EU

Olivier BOUTELLIS-TAFT, Chief Executive, Accountancy Europe

9.20 – 9.50 Keynote speech

Alexandra JOUR-SCHROEDER, Head of Unit, Directorate General for Justice and Consumers, European Commission

9.50 – 11.00 Launch of the report Under the Shell: Ending Money Laundering in Europe
The session will offer an overview of the main findings of Transparency International EU´s report on beneficial ownership transparency in Europe, a comparative analysis of national standards and practices across six European countries. It will also feature the presentation of money laundering case studies involving hidden ownership.Laure BRILLAUD, Policy Officer, Anti-Money Laundering, Transparency International EUAnne SCHELTEMA BEDUIN, Director, Transparency International Netherlands

Fritz STREIFF, Project and Research Officer,Transparency International Netherlands

Joao Paulo BATALHA, Communications and Outreach Manager, Transparência e Integridade

Chiara PUTATURO, Project Officer, Transparency International Italia

11.00 – 11.30 Coffee break
11.30 – 13.00 A year after the Panama Papers: Where does the EU stand?

This high-level panel shall focus on assessing the EU response to the Panama Papers. The panellists will not only be invited to discuss the adequacy of EU proposed new rules but also to address the issue of how well enforced rules are and how effective those rules are.

Moderator: John Rega, Chief Correspondent, Financial Services, MLex

Judith SARGENTINI, Member of the European Parliament and co-rapporteur for the revision of 4th Anti-Money Laundering Directive

Jeppe KOFOD, Member of the European Parliament and co-rapporteur of the PANA Inquiry Committee

Brooke HARRINGTON, Associate Professor Copenhagen Business School, author of “Capital without Borders, Wealth Managers and the One Percent”

Paul RADU, Director of Organised Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) and of Rise Project Romania

Duncan HAMES, Director of Policy, Transparency International UK

13:00 – 14:00 Networking cocktail reception

This event is organised thanks to the kind support of the European Commission and Accountancy Europe:

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